China is well on its way in opening up a new key battlefront in its war against hills. A recent report shows the progress being made in Yan’an, where the plan is to flatten 33 hills in order to make way for a smooth new urban area.
Yan’an in Shaanxi Province is in the process of carrying out a 10-year plan to level out a 78.5 kilometer piece of land on the outskirts of the current city in order to let the city grow free. The problem is that the land happens to be full of hills and ravines, and so those got to go. According to the plan, the new city promises to be twice the size of the current one, as well as being super easy to bike through.
NetEase reports that the Flatland project has been running into some problems apart from the normal ones you’d relate with trying to shave down mountains. Some investors have quietly backed out of the project leaving planners searching for new sources for the millions of RMB needed to keep the bulldozers running.
Still, progress continues, though carefully, as planners also recognize that the surrounding Loess Plateau isn’t the most stable of foundations. It sheltered Mao and the Communist Party following the Long March in centuries-old traditional cave houses dug into the sides of the hills, which are now being flattened, but the land hasn’t always been so kind to people that try to change it.
Seriously, nobody ever listens to scientists.
by Alex Linder
[Images via NetEase]